Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious!
What’s In This Post
In The Iron Hammer of the Witch, the tenth episode of Izetta: The Last Witch, we learn the capital of Eylstadt, Landsbruck, has fallen; Finé, Bianca, Sieghard Müller, and others of Finé’s inner circle make a desparate attempt to escape; Hans Obermayer and the Imperial Guard try to rescue Izetta; and Major Belkman is reminded that there’s such a thing as too much success.
Amazon only has one piece of Izetta-related merchandise (one different from last week!), but I’ve included some other war-time anime that I think you might like. Please check them out!
- Landsbruck is in flames. Bianca leads Finé and her inner circle through a secret passage into the mountains. The Archduchess feels the weight of those left behind, and Sieghard urges her to endure for all their sakes. Meanwhile, Sophie continues her wide-scale destruction of all military targets in Eylstadt, including the site of Izetta’s first major victory. Germanian armor and infantry overrun the country. Those who are able try to escape to the mountains.
- Hans Obermayer, a small detachment of his troops, and select Imperial Guard are within sight of Izetta, but there are too many Germanians for them to have a hope of approaching. Then, one of the few remaining planes of the Eylstadt air force begins evening the odds. Hans’ troops reach Izetta, then remain to cover Hans’ retreat with Izetta and the Imperial Guard.
- Belkman and Sophie present present their achievements to Emperor Otto. He’s pleased, but slightly disappointed that both Izetta and Finé escaped. The emperor promotes Belkman to Lieutenant Colonel, but also removes all responsibility for the witch and related programs from him. Belkman interprets the move correctly: he’s become too successful and threatens the emperor, so he’s being pushed aside.
- A month passes. In a fevered dream, Izetta recalls her grandmother telling her of the red stone Sophie’s using. The stone strips magical power from the land around, and it also devours the witch using it. It’s a forbidden stone, and the original Sophie stole it. Izetta awakens in their secret hideaway in the Alps where they’re trying to regroup. As Izetta relates the story of her short-lived battle with Sophie, Sieghard says that they should expect no mercy from Sophie. He should know: he has his ancestor’s diary; the ancestor who worked with the princess to hand Sophie over to the Inquisition to be tortured and killed. Finé confirms his story, revealing that she’s of that princess’ blood line. But with the diary spoke of something even more important: recognition that Sophie has half of the red stone that is able to permanently suck the ley line power out of the land and store it for future use (at the high cost Izetta’s grandmother warned her about). That’s why Izetta fell out of the sky in the last episode: Sophie had drained the power from the land to set a trap for Izetta.
Sophie and Germania launch a magic-powered V-2 attack on Britannia. The nation’s capital, Londenion, falls quickly. However, in the post-mission debrief, the doctor tells Sophie that her unstable clone body likely won’t last very much longer. The Germanian scientists and mass-producing Sophie bodies, but they don’t know if they can transfer her consciousness to the new them. Sophie, however, just wants to destroy Eylstadt; she doesn’t care about the Germanian plans.
- Izetta tries to get out of bed, but her legs won’t work. Finé can’t bear the sight of Izetta struggling; she’s even more upset that her aides suggest she seek asylum outside of the country, where she could direct a government in exile. Finé tells Izetta that the conflict is at an end; she can no longer ask Izetta to fight on. Finé runs from the room.
- The Germanian emperor announces the terms of surrender to the allies, which includes reparations for a total of 130 billion marks. In addition to that, the emperor announces his plan for world domination: including destruction of the Volga empire and the United States of Atlanta.
Unable to bear the thought that she had made the Archduchess cry, Izetta tries to get out of bed even though she can’t use her legs. As Bianca tries to comfort her, Sieghard reveals one more secret: he has the other half of the red stone that Sophie had used. Now, he offers it to Izetta.
What I Liked
The visuals of the Germanian equivalent of V-2 rockets, powered by Sophie’s magic, were horrifying. To anyone who remembers World War II and considered what might have happened, these weapons are the stuff of nightmare. It was doubly true of the attack on Britannia.
Another terrifying visual was the Germanian flag flying over conquered Landsbruck with a maniacally laughing Sophie in the background.
The award for quote of the episode goes to Sophie. When Elliot, the emperor’s chief aid, chides her for being rude, she responds, “A manwhore has no business talking down to me.” I guess being a) dead and brought back to life and b) a ridiculously powerful witch gives one confidence!
Belkman’s no idiot. When the emperor personally took charge of the witch and related projects, Belkman knew how to interpret the action: as a recognition that his success made him too powerful, and that the emperor now perceived him as a threat. I’ll be interested to see how Belkman reacts to this. Will he remain loyal to emperor? Was he ever really loyal?
The new Germanian weapon — a nuclear-style bomb using magic instead of uranium? — reminds me a lot of the Compass artifact from the game S.T.A.L.K.E.R.
I liked the reference of 130 billion marks for the monetary reparations. That matches the amount of World War I reparations levied against Germany in our world. I wish I could take credit for recognizing that, but to give credit where it’s due, I read that first in the Anime New Network review of this episode. Little details like that really make a series shine.
What I Liked Less
I don’t like the vibe that I’m getting more and more with this series: there ain’t gonna be any happy ending. For anyone. I really hope I’m wrong!
Like this week’s episode of BUBUKI/BURANKI: The Gentle Giants of the Galaxy, this was a busy, busy episode!
So, Finé knew that her princess ancestor had been the one to condemn the original Sophie to torture and death? I kinda think that Izetta deserved to know that! I can understand Finé not telling Izetta right away. She had just rediscovered her old friend, and they were very busy, what with the dogfight and the armored invasion and all. But after Izetta committed to risking her life to save Eylstadt from Germania, I really thinkFiné should have sat down with her friend to discuss history. Izetta deserved to know! She didn’t seem phased when she heard Finé talk about it, but still…
It was heart-breaking to watch Izetta, unable to use her legs, struggling to get into the wheelchair so she could keep fighting. I admire her spirit, but she’s going to get herself killed. Finé needs to be more clear if she thinks she can keep Izetta grounded. And with Sieghard doing his job and egging her on, I doubt Izetta’s going to get any rest in the next episode.
It seems that Sophie’s cloned body won’t last much longer, and Germania hopes to take as much advantage of her as they can as quickly as they can. She’s no fool, though. She’s using Germania as much as they’re using her. Also, I think her handlers know that Sophie could cut them down without much effort. I wonder how much longer Sophie will pretend to go along with them? No matter what she does, it’s clear she’s not going to show any mercy to Finé or her country. Even if she turns against Germania, it’s not going to help our heroes.
Now that Belkman understands he’s the subject of too much imperial attention, I wonder what he’ll do? He doesn’t strike me as one who will go quietly to his grave. I doubt he’d help Finé, but I could see him quietly slipping away to live in hiding. Or maybe defect to the United States of Atlanta? He’s realistic enough not to go after the emperor, but who knows?
What do you think? Will Belkman, even indirectly, help Finé? Will Sophie turn on the emperor before going on a final rampage against Eylstadt? Will Finé live long enough to see Izetta again? What can Izetta do, even with half the magical stone? Let me know what you think in the comments!
Other Posts of Interest
- Cooler Nights — That Means It’s Time for the Fall 2016 Anime Preview (Part 1) (discusses Izetta: The Last Witch)
- Izetta Eps 1 and 2: A Nazi By Any Other Name…
- Izetta Ep 3: The Sword in the Heavens
- Izetta Ep 4: The Secret of the Witch
- Izetta Ep 5: A False Miracle
- Izetta Ep 6: On a Quiet Day
- Izetta Ep 7: The Battle of Sognefjord
- Izetta Ep 8: A Cruel Fairy Tale
- Izetta Ep 9: The Sellun Corridor Burns
- Izetta Ep 11: Finé